One of the most powerful prayers I know to pray is the wreck it prayer. God, here are my plans, if you have something better in mind, wreck it. And often he does.
I can spend days creating an elaborate plan of action, I can even be in the middle of working the plan, and here’s God just like Miley Cyrus warned … he came in like a wrecking ball! Boom, what I thought would work, doesn’t. Bang, how I imagined it would be, isn’t. Crash, when I thought it would happen, it didn’t.
Disappointment is a strong possibility on this journey of faith. I still don’t understand why God allows some things that seem so bad, and yet prohibits other things that seem so good. If I didn’t know better, I would think He just doesn’t care. I would assume He was just too busy. I would believe He was punishing me. But I know better. I know better, but sometimes I don’t “feel” better.
I once had a turning point in my faith. It wasn’t one of those turning points of God shows up and does something miraculous in a fashion he can’t be denied. No, my turning point was a moment of raw honesty after being knocked to my knees.
We had built a successful business, then we left that business to help start a Church. In my head, I believed our faithful sacrifice for God’s work would be met with his miraculous provision. In my head I had it all worked out. I would go in faith and God would go before me with open doors. To my absolute shock, I went in faith and my faith was met with slamming doors and dead ends. Every day I woke up believing today would be the day it would all change … and it didn’t. It just kept getting worse.
We were completely out of money and as self-employed individuals we knew the pipeline of our business had absolutely nothing in it. We were in trouble. But you see, I’m naturally an optimistic person. I believed. And I was disappointed. That disappointment crushed me.
One day, sitting on the couch, my husband looked at me and said, “why don’t you just admit you’re mad at God.”
To me, that was absolutely absurd. I couldn’t do that. I couldn’t say it. I mean, he’s God. What if I hurt his feelings? He has lightening bolts in his hands, I really don’t want to insult him.
My husband continued to push and he said, “Pamela, you think God doesn’t already know how you feel? Just say it!”
And then the words came out of my mouth … GOD, I AM SO MAD. I CAN’T BELIEVE THIS IS HOW YOU REPAY FAITHFULNESS.
That day began a change in me. That change only came after a crushing.
There have been many crushings since then. Prayers that seemed to go unanswered. Pain that feels unresolved. Restoration I am yet to see. And God has been working in every detail. Looking back I see it. I see now what he was doing, but I sure couldn’t see it then. So today, I must trust he is once again working and the crushing is for a purpose.
Your crushing is for a great purpose as well my friend.
What doors have slammed in your face? What dead-ends have you come to? Where have you been disappointed with the payout from your faithfulness?
It’s okay to be disappointed. It’s okay to be mad. God can handle your emotions. You don’t have to feel guilty for honest feelings over the crapfest you woke up to today. You won’t hurt God’s feelings with yours. God doesn’t expect you to always like it, but he does expect you to trust Him anyway. And here’s what no one tells you about trust; it still feels scary even when you fully trust. Just because you trust doesn’t mean the ride is easy. I trust if I jump from an airplane with a parachute on my back, the parachute will open. Trust allows me to jump, but my hands will still sweat and my legs will still shake. I’ll still feel the drop before I’m caught.
In Philippians 4: 12-13 the apostle Paul writes “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”
If the man God chose to write the majority of the bible was in a mess, I guess that means we probably will be too. If his chosen messenger would experience disappointment, persecution, hardship, and hunger … I guess we too are qualified for the same. How else will we know the gift of God’s strength if we are never subjected to being out of our own? How else will we know the power of God’s healing if we are never sick? How else will we know the provision of God if our own ways don’t meet defeat? How will we ever know God’s better plans if ours don’t first fail?
God doesn’t insulate us from real life. He doesn’t place us in a bubble of protection and let us live perfectly peaceful lives. Nope, he lets crap happen, then he uses that crap as fertilizer to make us grow.
THE CRAP OF YOUR PAST IS THE FERTILIZER OF TODAY.
The disappointments you’ve faced have crushed you, but there was purpose in the crushing. As my friend TD Jakes says in his new book “Crushing”, grapes must first be crushed to become their most powerful form of fine wine. If you’re being crushed, it’s because something better is coming. Your life is being transformed into a more powerful, more potent, more valuable form. A pound of grapes is $2.49 at the local WalMart. A bottle of wine can be hundreds of dollars. Those grapes were crushed.
Your life may look okay right now, but you see, your creator put so much more than just okay in you. Okay is not enough. He sees your potential and knows you have awesome in you. So, he allows the crushing to elevate you to your higher form. You’re a fine wine sister. Fine wine requires crushing … and it requires time. Don’t give up in the process.
The process isn’t always pretty. Wrecking balls aren’t gentle. They’re destructive and destroy what once was. But there’s always purpose in the process. Our God is in the details. He is using all things for good, yes even those things which make absolutely no sense right now. Yes, even our good plans that we have all worked out, when they get wrecked it’s for a purpose. So God, wreck our plans for your better plans.
If it’s for me, bless it. If it’s not, block it.
And when God does some blocking, keep the faith that it’s not because he’s mad at you. You can be mad at God without him being mad at you. You can be at your wits end, without God being at his. You can be stuck and God can move those mountains. Or he may choose to make you into a mountain climber. Either way, he will see you through. You won’t stay here. He has somewhere he is taking you and it’s beyond this mountain. He has a master plan he is working.
He crushes grapes to make fine wine.
He crushes our plans to give us something more valuable.
He turns crap into fertilizer that promotes growth.
He uses our crappy, hopeless mess as the very thing that causes us to grow bigger, better, stronger, faster.
If you have long hallways with slammed doors, my sister it’s because God has something very specific for you and you must keep going down the hallway. When it’s the right door, it will open, you just haven’t found it yet.
If you are knee deep in a mess and can’t seem to find your way out, oh girl … what a harvest you will have when the season is right because that’s a lot of fertilizer for your growth!
I take myself back to that couch where I sat so many years ago and finally let out my disappointment in God. He was so faithful to me, even when I wasn’t. He never gave up on his plan for me, even when I did. I’m grateful he didn’t allow me to enter the doors I thought were best, because I was wrong. He had better in mind for me. So much better.
He has better in mind for you too. If it’s for you, he will bless it. If it’s not, he will block it.
God, here are our plans, wreck them if you have something better. We’ll try not to be spoiled brats in the wrecking. Help us be obedient daughters in the mess, and grateful girls in the process.